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Showing posts with label Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk. Show all posts

Saturday, 20 May 2017

From a town in western Russia to the north of England... (work in progress)

An accreting assortment of Tweets about Lady Macbeth (2016)

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2017 (19 to 26 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)

20 May

An accreting assortment of Tweets about Lady Macbeth (2016) (work in progress)

Those born in Russia (or the former USSR) – or who were not, but who study Russian literature – may be in a different relation to Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District and, because considering it in, its literary and social context – if we are interested in music, we will all know that (so the story goes) Dmitri Shostakovich, looking at an edition of Pravda, found himself there condemned*, and having [to appear] ‘to change his ways’ (again, as the story goes).

One question, amongst many, that the film may pose (not necessarily a bad thing in a film that we should wish to enquire) is whether it commends to us Shostakovich’s opera / libretto, and / or Nikolai Leskov’s original novella (from 1865)…

In modern Russia, the town of Mtsensk lies in Oryol Oblast (a federal subject of Russia)

Film and other references :

* Effi Briest ~ Theodor Fontane

* Lady Chatterley (2006) [adapting** John Thomas and Lady Jane ~ D. H. Lawrence]

* Sunset Song (2015)

* The Tenant of Wildfell Hall ~ Anne Brontë

End-notes :

* Not straightaway, when the work was first performed in Leningrad and Moscow (within days) in January 1934, but around two years later.

** Not 'Based on one of the most scandalous novels of our time', as IMDb asserts (@IMDb), with regard to Lawrence...

Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Saturday, 11 August 2012

Responding like Shostakovich

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2012
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)

11 August

It was decided to give Dmitri S. a hrad* time, as a delayed response, to Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk (which I have not knowingly heard any more than an extract from (long frogotten**), nor do I know where M. is).

Let's say that Stalin took offence at the work. Maybe he did, maybe he didn't (though he could have done: he heard things, and he didn't always like - or condemn - them), but it was the official line.

DS took the official way of reply, saying that he was responding to just criticism, and the work disappeared, I gather, for three decades, with DS having a hard time and having to abandon his formalist ways (in public, anyway, even if he was composing his string quartets on the sly).

All this, it is clear enough, is happening on the surface - publicly and officially, the work (and DS with it) was condemned, so no point defending it, but does it tell us anything?

Yes, maybe a bit, because if you think that this posting is crap, you can add a coment to that effect. If, because it is not the Soviet might against DS, I just call you a troll***, does that mean anything in any objective terms, or is it just a label, like reactionary, liberalism or - that wonder of wonders for a fairly meaningless phrase - political correctness?

Obviously, it means that I disagree violently not with what you have said (but with you!), and want you to go away, a stage on from finding your message in my spam folder and, deciding that it is spam, deleting it. If I were hacking your page and putting anti-Islamic or -Pakistani slogans on there, maybe, and maybe a call to the police, before you get blamed for some sort of incitement, but what about trying to tell you that perhaps you are wrong?

Really a response to just criticism to lash out with You're trolling my blog!, because you can't stand the heat in the kitchen? After all, who lit the flames with his or her blog to begin with - and isn't it there for anyone to read and maybe disagree with? If a reader responds by trying to engage with the arguments and refute them, that isn't wrecking activity in my mind, but, more importantly, the response to that criticism (not accepting it as possibly just, just trolling) may be indicative of insecurity and an inability to accept the hypocrisy of the position argued for, of not practising what one preaches.

And as for political correctness, if we mean using the right words, but then actually 'queer bashing' with the best of 'em, then that's just whited sepulchres, hypocrisy, and a bogus party-line, seeking to get the minority vote...


* Sorry, not thinking about Prague - honestly!

** I shall keep that in, too, never having managed to wrap my fingers around that one before.

** I don't know who originated this faintly idiotic description, probably someone who's never read Peer Gynt, but my sister and I (at a lunch-stop by rail between Bergen and Oslo) met a troll in 1973 and were awarded a certificate, so they can't be all bad!